Joe and Mary Zerngast started Chicken Mary’s in the early 1940s. Joe, a miner by trade, was no longer able to work due to poor health. In order to help support the family, Mary turned to what she knew best, cooking. In the beginning, with Joe’s help, Mary served customers in their home, seating them at the kitchen table. Soon, word spread about the great food and it became impossible to seat everyone in the Zerngast home. Consequently, in 1945, Joe and Mary purchased the Foxtown Mining Camp Pool Hall and moved it to a location just west of the current Chicken Mary’s. In 1961 Joe died but Mary, with the help of her son Zig and his wife Tootie, continued to run the restaurant. The current restaurant was built in 1966 and the staff work hard to ensure the fine heritage the Zerngasts began 60+ years ago.